Wallace Stevens

A Postcard From The Volcano

Children picking up our bones 
Will never know that these were once 
As quick as foxes on the hill; 

And that in autumn, when the grapes 
Made sharp air sharper by their smell 
These had a being, breathing frost; 

And least will guess that with our bones 
We left much more, left what still is 
The look of things, left what we felt 

At what we saw. The spring clouds blow 
Above the shuttered mansion house,
Beyond our gate and the windy sky 

Cries out a literate despair. 
We knew for long the mansion's look 
And what we said of it became 

A part of what it is ... Children, 
Still weaving budded aureoles, 
Will speak our speech and never know, 

Will say of the mansion that it seems 
As if he that lived there left behind
 A spirit storming in blank walls, 

A dirty house in a gutted world,
A tatter of shadows peaked to white, 
Smeared with the gold of the opulent sun.

spoken = Doug Ross